From The Star, Thursday 17 November 2011
Although we would not normally republish an article from a newspaper for reasons of copyright, in this case we have been asked to do so by local residents who are sick to death of this problem. Having seen the awful state of the park we are glad to help.
What is starnge that not so many months ago when the Sultan took his regular morning walk the park was much cleaner and had very few hawkers. It seems that since he no longer visits the park it has deteriorated dramatically. That’s food for thought, isn’t it!
We hope that Star Publications, being a public spirited organisation, will not object to this blog.
The text read:
Residents complain of hawkers marring park
By FOONG THIM LENG
THE presence of hawkers has ruined the beauty of the Sultan Abdul Aziz Recreational Park, popularly known as Polo Ground, in Ipoh.
Visitors to the park and nearby residents are complaining that hawkers’ vans, tables and chairs occupy precious parking space designated for park users while rubbish is strewn all over the area and across the road at the homes of residents.
Jogger Albert Lau said the once peaceful residential suburb had been turned into a “market” with people selling produce from their car boots in the morning on weekends.
“There is massive traffic congestion there, especially on Persiaran Brash, when motorists stop by to patronise the stalls.
“They park just about anywhere and everywhere.
“I pity the residents. Very often, they can’t enter or leave their homes because motorists have parked in front of their gates,” said Lau.
A resident, who only wished to be known as Tan, said Persiaran Brash was like a “glutton street” with stalls offering food ranging from laksa to rojak throughout the day, adding that some of the stalls even operated at night.
“Evidently, there is a public demand for laksa sold by the hawkers at Polo Ground.
“But peddling from vans by the roadside is not only an eyesore for the community, it also means uncertainty for the hawkers as their business is affected by the sun and the rain,” he said.
The hawkers, Tan said, should be relocated to a designated hawker centre with better facilities.
“The community cares about the fate of the hawkers.
“They, like us, only want to earn a living but they have to learn that it cannot be done at the expense of other people,” he added.
Tan said several complaints had been forwarded to the Ipoh City Council and state government. Yet, the problem remains.
“If the council is wary of being unpopular with the hawker community, it must be prepared to risk losing the respect and support of the rest of the community.
“What good is all the greenery, trees, beautiful landscape and natural environment when the long stretch of hawkers on the entire street right next to the park, takes away all the beauty,” said Tan.
Datuk Bandar Datuk Roshidi Hashim acknowledged that the council had received complaints about the hawkers.
He said the council’s proposal to relocate the hawkers to a nearby site had been met with resistance although it would continue to pursue the matter for an amicable solution.
“I hope the matter will not be politicised. The people must understand that decisions made by the council are for their own benefit,” he said.